The Red Jacket Cycling Team will be returning in 2013 to dominate races in the Great Lakes region, from the WORS series to the Great Lakes Fatbike Series to the UPCROSS scene. Watch for the winged RJ shield at a race near you!
The mountain bike race season isn’t completely over yet, but the majority of it is. How did things wrap up for the Red Jackets?
At the Chain Drive, first-year Red Jacket Justin Weber turned in a strong top-10 finish overall in a stacked men’s field for the 32-mile race, which was also good for first in his age group. Chris Schmidt also rode to a 22nd place overall, followed closely behind by Tim Kostner, who captured his age group. Caleb Wendel easily won his age group in the 32-mile race as well. In the 16-mile race, Kit Cischke just missed a top-10 finish, coming in 11th overall and 3rd in his age group. Jon Klimowicz finished just out of the top-20. Chris Lehto had a strong ride in a strong field that earned him 42nd overall. Dave Watkins finished just behind Chris. Steve Hackney finished just off of his age group podium, as did Bruce Harvey. Tammi Lehto fought through her knee injury to grab 3rd in her age group. Brett Hamlin shepherded his 6-year old son to a 3rd place in his age group, making sure the next generation of riders will be ready to slip on the Red Jacket jersey. And of course, Terry Kinzel crossed the line smiling and graciously allowing the race to cross his property!
The race season then gets a little quiet until the Great Deer Chase in Calumet. Justin Weber again led the charge with a strong 8th place in the 27-mile effort. James Bialas came in 27th overall, hotly contesting the unofficial Official U.P. Singlespeed Championships. Brett Hamlin continued his strong comeback season with a solid 40th place, just getting nipped by the overall women’s winner. In the 15-mile division, Steve Hackey nabbed a podium in his age group, followed only 9 seconds by Chris Lehto. Bruce Pletka grabbed an age group podium, sharing a little awards time with his son Jeremy (who grabbed 1st in the singlespeed category).
The Michigan Tech MTB Rondevous is in its sophomore year, taking place on the fantastic singletrack of the Tech Trails. Chris Schmidt returned from Deer Chase photography duties to grab 8th overall in the 2-lap race. Finishing just 4 minutes behind the Speedy Schmidty was Brett Hamlin. Caleb Wendel rode his way to a 3rd place overall in the 1-lap race with Steve Hackney grabbing the last spot in the top 10.
The final leg of the Keweenaw Triple Crown is the the famous (or infamous) Copper Harbor Fat Tire Festival. With more than 400 riders lining up to climb the hills around the tiny village of Copper Harbor, the Red Jackets had their work cut out for them. Again, Justin Weber led the effort with a solid 8th place in the grueling 28 mile race. Chris Schmidt declared one gear was enough for the hills and grabbed 4th place in the singlespeed class and putting lots of riders with gears to shame. Brett Hamlin survived the day and posted a solid effort, coming in 69th overall, still in the upper 50% of a stacked field. In the 14 mile race, Tim Kostner finished 2nd overall, just over 1 minute behind the winner. Caleb Wendel finished 16th overall, which was only good for 7th in the massive 50-man 30-39 age bracket. Kit Cischke rolled in 32nd, 11th in that same massive bracket. Steve Webber came in just behind Kit. James Bialas piloted his Kona to a solid 52nd overall. Bruce Harvey finished 6th in his age bracket with a strong effort. Chris Lehto had an off day, but still finished ahead of more than 75 riders.
The team has clearly taken their share of awards this year. Next year should be even better! And now we turn our eyes to the UPCROSS cyclocross series before the snow starts to fly again…
We all know about the upcoming Chain Drive. We’ll be doing pre-rides of the course several times in the coming week. But there are still some other races coming up that haven’t gotten as much press.
This race isn’t 100% confirmed yet, but is simply pending approval from the City of Hancock. For those who have participated in the race before, the course is mainly the same:
- Swim: 500m; Hancock beach to boat launch
- Bike: 28k; Campground to McLain St. Park and back
- Run: 5k; Campground, Left on Anthony St., Left on Birch St., Right on Robert St., Right on snowmobile trail to Elevation St., Right on Elevation St., Right on M-203 back to campground
The race will be on its traditional day, after the Chain Drive, Sunday, June 19th. Racers will hit the water at 11am race Registration is $35 for an individual or $55 for a team. Race t-shirt included. More details and confirmation of all the race details will be coming on 13 June.
Three Days of Marquette
To replace the cancelled Superior Bike Fest, the Marquette cycling community rallied to create several underground races. Here’s the skinny:
Friday: Cherry Creek Road Uphill Time Trial. Starting at the corner or Cherry Creek Road and County 480, and then heading up. Race meeting starts at 5:45 PM.
Saturday: YGB MTB Chase. 2 hard laps of a course starting a the parking lot east of the Carp River. Race Meeting at 8:45 AM, race starts at 9AM.
Sunday: Superior Bike Fest Memorial Ride/Race. Starts and finishes at the Superior Hills Middle School and covers the old Superior Bike Fest Course. As with La Fleche du Nord and the Ronde van Skandia, this is a “ride” that just might hit race-pace. Start time is “early”.
All events in the 3 Days of Marquette are unsanctioned, unsupported and simply for fun. There are competitions for overall placing for those who compete in all three races.
Q: Is it a ride or a race?
Q: Is it competitive event or a party?
Q: Is it a Solo challenge like no other or a group fun ride?
A: It is the 12 Hours of Potluck! make it what you want
The 12 Hours of Potluck is upon us again. This year’s edition of the race.. err… ride… event is July 23, 2011 from 10am – 10pm. Check out all the details and register early at Blind Stoker! Post in the comments if you’d like to put together a team.
Now that the roads are clear, we’ll begin some regular road rides for those of you who want to pound the pavement a little bit. These are usually really hard rides, every man for himself. Usually…
But to start out the season, we’ll do something a little more moderate. The first ride will be Tuesday, April 12 at 6 PM. Starting at the Bike Shop, we’ll cruise up M203 to Calumet and then loop back along US41, bombing the descent down Quincy Hill. That’s about 33 miles and 2 hours in the saddle.
We’ll keep up rides on Tuesday until the end of April, at which point we’ll evaluate if it’s the right day/time and if there’s enough interest to continue.
The Keweenaw will play host to round two of the 2011 Spring Classics Season with a ride from Houghton to the top of Brockway Mountain: 75 miles, 3000ft of climbing, 6 sections of dirt.
May 7, 2011, 10A.M.
Details to follow.
Obligatory teaser poster:
We are a race team; that’s true. But to race, you must train. And to train, you have to know the local roads and trails.
And really, at the heart of our racing is an abiding love of simply riding our bikes.
To that end, founding member Chris Schmidt has launched a new website called Bike the Keweenaw to be the definitive resource for cycling in the Keweenaw, be it road, mountain, touring or racing. Check it out, contribute, engage.
Just a reminder: All 2011 kit orders are due at the Bike Shop by the end of business on Friday, March 4th. Don’t miss your opportunity to wear the most-recognized kit in the U.P. peloton.
For those of you who like a little more adventure in your racing, the Outdoor Adventures Program at MTU is putting on the Great Northern Adventure Race (the GNAR) on Saturday, April 16th. Details can be found here, along with the registration documents. From the website:
This is the first running of the Great Northern Adventure Race, The GNAR, and we want you to be a part of it. This introductory 3-5 hour race will consist of orienteering, Mt Biking, Running/Walking, and other mystery challenge events working with either 2 or 4 person teams. This is a great race for first time adventure racer as well as a good warm up for the seasoned veterans. The race will take place in the rugged and picturesque area around the Upper Peninsula city of Houghton, MI.
Our first general meeting of the year will be at 7:30 PM at President Kostner’s house. We’ll mainly be looking at any kit orders that people need to make, introducing the new board and seeing what our goals are for the season. Bring any kit you have so that people can try it on!
You can find your way to the meeting here.